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Meter Reading Profiles & Best Practices

Meter Reading Profiles & Best Practices

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Meter Reading Profiles & Best Practices

Tenth Edition, Published December 2016

This report delivers the results of our research on utility meter reading practices and technologies. The Ascent Group conducted research to better understand how utilities are optimizing practices and utilizing technology to improve meter reading efficiency and effectiveness while reducing operating costs. We asked companies to share strategies and experiences to identify the practices that lead to higher productivity, reduced costs, and increased performance. We also asked utilities to provide their plans moving forward as well as lessons learned along the way.

This report profiles participants in a case study format, sharing current practices, lessons learned, challenges overcome, plans for the future, and business practices that have led to improved performance. In addition, we provide detailed results and analysis from the survey itself and detail "best practices" demonstrated by our participants.

The report also profiles meter reading technologies in place within these utilities, provide an analysis of strategies and approaches, including the transition to Automated Meter Reading (AMR) and Advanced Metering Infrastructure (AMI) technologies, prepaid metering, and other technologies to improve efficiency and effectiveness. Finally, we will explore the successes achieved.

Analysis & Graphs included in this Report:

  • Meter Reading Findings & Trends
  • Recommendations for Improvement
  • Innovative or Winning Strategies
  • Meters to be Read
  • Industry Segments Represented
  • Participants by Organizational Type
  • Union Represented?
  • Average Read Time
  • Participant Read Schedule
  • Leave When Work Complete?
  • Scope Meter Reading?
  • Collect in Route?
  • Read for Others?
  • Service Territory Composition
  • Average Territory Make-Up
  • Meters per Square Mile
  • Meters per Mile Distribution Main/Line
  • Percent Inaccessible Meters
  • Percent Indoor Meters
  • Years Read Experience
  • Percent Annual Turnover
  • Average Span of Control
  • Average Overtime
  • Top 5 Meter Reader Performance Measures
  • Top 5 Techniques to Address Inaccessible Meters
  • Top 5 "Bad Dog" Handling Techniques
  • New Hire Days Classroom Training
  • New Hire Days On-the-Job Training
  • Meter Reading Errors vs Training Days
  • New Hire Average Days to Standard
  • New Hire Average Class Size
  • Initial Training Tests?
  • Meter Reading Training Certification?
  • Computer-based Training?
  • Refresher Training?
  • Refresher Training Tests?
  • Refresher Training Computer-based?
  • Percent AMR Meters
  • Percent AMR Meters Installed by Company
  • Percent AMR Installations by Year
  • Participants with AMR Meters
  • AMR Program Maturity
  • AMR Equivalents FTEs
  • AMR Vendors Represented
  • Type of AMR Technology
  • Handheld Vendors Represented
  • Routing Software Vendors
  • Use Route Management Software?
  • Cost per Read
  • Percent Meter Reading Errors
  • Percent Meters Not Read
  • Meters Read per FTE (monthly)
  • Top 5 Plans for the Future
  • Best Performer Characteristics